Uveal melanoma

The ERCM has already treated over 1000 patients with uveal melanoma and thus offers the most comprehensive radiosurgical experience with this cancer worldwide.

With the Cyberknife technology, uveal melanoma is treated on an outpatient basis and without surgical intervention. A hospital stay is not required. For patients, this means that they can continue with their usual daily routine. After the treatment, you can usually keep on your usual activities.

The indication for treatment is made in close cooperation with colleagues from the Eye Clinic at the University of Munich (LMU). A decision is made on a case-by-case basis as to whether Cyberknife treatment is the best and safest therapy option.

Aderhautmelanom vorher

Uveal melanoma in a 61-year-old patient before Cyberknife treatment.

Aderhautmelanom nachher

The uveal melanoma 20 month
after the Cyberknife treatment.
There is just a little scar tissue remnant visible on ultrasound imaging.

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Cyberknife technology for the treatment of uveal melanoma

This video shows a uveal melanoma treatment in cooperation with the University Eye Clinic Munich. So far, more than 1000 patients have been treated with this method at the ERCM.

Definition of uvea melanoma

The uveal melanoma is an initially flat-growing tumor that progressively bulges, lifting the retina above it. The usually unilateral occurring tumor can form at different points in the eye, including the posterior pole. The annual incidence rate is 7 patients out of 1 million people.

Symptoms of uveal melanoma

In the beginning, the patients usually have no complaints. As the tumor size increases, the tumor becomes noticeable due to reduced visual performance or a shadow in the visual field. Rarely, eye pressure increase or breakthrough of the tumor through the dermis can be observed.

Diagnosis of uveal melanoma

For examination and diagnosis, the eye is first examined by direct and indirect ophthalmology. In addition, an ultrasound sonography is performed to clarify tumor height (prominence), the internal echo (reflectivity), the presence of vessels and a retinal detachment (exudative ablatio retinae). With angiography of the fundus, tumorous vessels can be visualized. At diagnosis, only 1 percent of patients have metastases. These are often found in the liver.

Therapy of uveal melanoma

For patients with uveal melanoma there are different therapies such as radiotherapy, radiosurgery and surgery.

Modern technologies include cyberknife radiosurgery. This is done without fixing the patient, the eye is immobilized by retrobulbar anesthesia. The radiosurgical cyberknife method can be used to destroy not only small but also medium to large melanomas without surgical intervention. The experienced Cyberknife Zentrum München offers its patients safe therapy.

Other radiotherapeutic and radiosurgical methods of treatment are also used. These include brachytherapy with the application of radioactive radiation carriers (Ruthenium 106 plaques) to the dermis of the eye, conventional Linac radiation therapy, proton therapy and the older gamma-knife method.

A previously widespread treatment of choroidal melanoma was the surgical removal of the eye (enucleation), especially in large initial findings with the aim to prevent metastasis of the tumor. However, large studies have failed to establish a link between different primary tumor treatments and the later onset of metastases.